27 April 2022
By the time Jesus was born, the single biggest problem He faced was that His nation's religious leaders no longer knew His Father. Indeed, they served a god of their imaginations. It was really no different from the Sin of Jeroboam: painting the name "Jehovah" on whatever it was they felt like worshiping.
Judaism is a pagan religion, folks. They did not recognize their Messiah because they worshiped a false god. People who talk about "Judeo-Christian" this or that have joined themselves to that pagan religion. It is not the same God as the one in the Bible.
The same goes for Muslims: They are pagans. No matter what they claim, their god is a fake. Just as with Jeroboam, they have all these silly pagan notions under the label once associated with the God of the Bible.
Western Civilization is pagan. People try to associate following Christ with all kinds of stuff that is actually idolatry. After the Fall of Rome, church leaders decided to embrace the pagan notions of the invading Germanic tribes as a way of persuading them to come under their "Christian" authority. It was just a propaganda ploy. At that point, the official church leadership were acting like any other human political entity. And it worked, but it also pulled the church leadership into that pagan Germanic tribal world.
And to be honest, to the degree it is western, most organized "Christian" religion is actually pagan. It's not that we can't be nice to all these people and try to get along. But we must be careful in our hearts to maintain a strong Covenant identity under the ancient Hebrew God of the Bible. Yes, He portrays Himself as a nomad desert sheikh, a Bronze Age deity. That's His choice, so you darned sure better get your head wrapped around the imagery so you can understand Him.
So while there are thousands of activities we can share with Jews, Muslims, and mainstream churchians, we must keep that boundary line clear in our minds. They are not us, and we are not them. We have no more in common with them than any random secular person in the world. It's all cultural baggage we drag around because that's how things of this world are done. You'll find people of genuine faith, too, but if they don't cling to the Covenant, they aren't your "neighbor" in Christ.
I'm genuinely sorry at how this isolates us. It's a very lonely road we tread. We didn't make the world like this; we are striving to bring redemption. This is the Cross we carry. For all the compassion we bring to the mission, we must never forget that they want to crucify our Covenant commitment.
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